Monday, March 31, 2014

Gear still to pick up (about $200 worth)

Here's the gear on my list that I'm still missing.
  • A tarp (Outdoor Products All Purpose Tarp at REI) $8
  • River shoes -- I could use some existing ones, but I'd really like closed toe river sandals, and I don't see any benefit in pricey Keen or Merrell ones vs. Ozark Trail river sandals at Wal-Mart for $11
  • Fuel cannister $5
  • A new lighter from the dollar store.  I could use an existing one, but given the cheap price, I'd like a full one
  • Copper coated scrubbing pad.  Again; dollar store.
  • JetBoil Zip cooking system.  The smaller one, for about $75.  It's a mite cheaper at Cabelas than anywhere else, for some reason.
  • SteriPEN traveler water purifier.  I could punt and get some treatment pills for less, but at $50, this is a "permanent" option that I like a great deal.
  • Camera.  I don't have one of my own that I'd like to bring (although I saw an option for $80) so I'll probably just use the one that is nominally my wife's instead.
  • I have a headlamp that fits on the brim of a hat, but I'd like to buy a regular one.  Again; there are high-priced brand name ones, and there are low priced Ozark Trail ones at Wal-Mart for about $7.  I see no benefit in having a brand name flashlight.
  • Permethrin--my first and best defense against mosquitos.  I need to buy a batch and treat my clothes, pack, tent and sleeping bag.  $10
  • Trails Illustrated map.  $10 from Amazon.  Need to pick this up really soon to get the route details nailed down well in advance of the trip.
  • Pack Rain cover.  The North Face makes a good one for $11 at REI.
  • I budgeted $10 for any items I need to finish out my repair kits, first aid kits or wash kits. 
And, of course, the food.  You'll notice that I have two expensive items still to pick up; the water treatment SteriPEN and the JetBoil backpacker stove.  Other than that, it's just nickel and dime type stuff that bulks out the rest of the budget.

The entire trip has a budget of $1,000, about two thirds of which is gas and hotel cost associated with just getting there.  Next year, with a completed gear list, I'm hoping to lower that budget.  Or, more accurately, I'm hoping to maintain that budget, but have more of it left over to improve some of the items on my list.  I'd like to have a better tent, for instance, but good backpacking tents ain't cheap.  And by next summer, I'll probably need new boots/shoes again too.

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